My mission this week has been to really get to know the new characters who have been writing themselves into my life. I gave them life early this year but have since allowed them, like spoiled children, to run over the pages in a glorious fest of their own invention. This has turned them from the crude caricatures that I started out with into flawed real, but not yet fully rounded people. And so I am so pleased I did, but they remained with their mysteries. So, armed with new notebook (A4 hardback no less) I have been asking them to tell me their stories properly this week away from the actual pages of the novel. Sit down interviews. Yeah really, which might seem an odd concept but that’s how it is.
I think reining in this control and devoting pages to each one has made a massive difference already. I am not one who advocates, as a rule, the detailed character sheets I see some writers use as I feel these too clinical for the way I write. However, this has allowed their stories to take on some new and interesting forms so I can better shape them on the page when I resume the story proper next week.
Since the threads of the plot, as I described are more akin to dots, dots that need joining, this exercise serves to show me how they connect, which, rascals that they are, with their impish grins and their mischievous ways, they were not allowing me to see clearly before.
Is there a rule to the way we write our stories and how we bring the elements of our novels together… ? No. Not a hard and fast one anyway. But I share these devices as they might be useful to my fellow travellers on this odd and wonderful journey to be better writers.
That is all. Have a wonderful day 🙂
Or maybe it should be how the characters reveal themselves…
are your characters behaving today?